Transcriptional Regulation of Cellular and Viral Promoters by the Hepatitis C Virus Core Protein

Virus Res. 1995 Aug;37(3):209-20. doi: 10.1016/0168-1702(95)00034-n.


The genomic region encoding the hepatitis C virus (HCV) core protein was cloned into a mammalian expression vector to study its role on the transcriptional regulation of cellular proto-oncogene and viral promoters. Using a transient transfection assay in human hepatocellular carcinoma (HepG2) cells, we demonstrate that the HCV core protein activates the human c-myc, Rous sarcoma virus long terminal repeat (LTR), and simian virus 40 (SV40) early promoters; and suppresses the c-fos promoter and human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) LTR activity. The transcriptional regulation of cellular proto-oncogenes by the HCV core protein suggests possible involvement of the core protein in the deregulation of normal hepatocyte growth and hepatocarcinogenesis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • 3T3 Cells
  • Animals
  • Avian Sarcoma Viruses / genetics
  • Base Sequence
  • DNA Primers
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Viral*
  • HIV Long Terminal Repeat
  • HIV-1 / genetics
  • Hepacivirus / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-fos / genetics
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-myc / genetics
  • Repetitive Sequences, Nucleic Acid
  • Simian virus 40 / genetics
  • Transcription, Genetic
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured
  • Viral Core Proteins / analysis
  • Viral Core Proteins / genetics*


  • DNA Primers
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-fos
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-myc
  • Viral Core Proteins
  • nucleocapsid protein, Hepatitis C virus